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Forum calls for multilateral efforts to fight against COVID-19

Thursday,Jun 25, 2020


With the United Nations marking the 75th anniversary of the signing of its charter on Friday, experts take part in an online forum on June 24, 2020. [Photo/CCTV]



With the United Nations marking the 75th anniversary of the signing of its charter on Friday, experts at an online forum are calling for all countries to enhance multilateralism amid the COVID-19 global health crisis, which has greatly disrupted countries around the world and exposed them to severe economic and social repercussions.

The COVID-19 outbreak is a stark reminder of the need for global cooperation across borders, an international forum of leading analysts heard on Wednesday. Countries' responses will determine how fast the world recovers and how well it handles pressing challenges, they said.

The online event, co-organized by think tanks from China, Germany, Russia, and the United Kingdom, was held to mark the 75th anniversary of the signing of the UN charter.

"The international community should have become much closer, but unfortunately, the rise of unilateralism has deepened division across the world in past years," said former French prime minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin, who gave the keynote speech at the forum.

Raffarin said a rising trend of unilateralism, isolationism and protectionism has been reinforced during the COVID-19 outbreak, threatening the effectiveness of the global fight against the pandemic.

He emphasized that the United Nations still stands as the largest international multilateral arena today.



Sha Zukang, a former UN undersecretary-general for economic and social affairs, takes part in an online forum on June 24, 2020. [Photo/CCTV]


Sha Zukang, a former UN undersecretary-general for economic and social affairs, said the UN still plays a vital role in safeguarding multilateralism globally.

"The world economy is interconnected. China's growth will help Asia and even Europe's growth, and the development of North America and Europe will also benefit the growth of emerging markets and developing countries," Sha said.

Wang Huiyao, president of the Center for China and Globalization and the forum's moderator, said the founding of the UN 75 years ago raised hopes for a new era of peace and prosperity for all, and the organization has become the cornerstone of today's multilateral structures that work to manage and reduce shared global problems.

Speakers at the forum said China, which was among the first countries to sign the UN Charter in 1945 and has upheld the spirit of strengthening international cooperation, is a long-standing builder of world peace, a contributor to global development and a defender of the international order.

During the pandemic, China has continued to strengthen cooperation with other countries, reinforcing the multilateral cooperation system by sending medical personnel and supplies to countries in need and serving global interests through its research on COVID-19.



With the United Nations marking the 75th anniversary of the signing of its charter on Friday, experts take part in an online forum on June 24, 2020. [Photo/CCTV]


Nicholas Rosellini, the resident coordinator of UN China, said the novel coronavirus pandemic is the biggest challenge facing humanity since World War II. To fight it, he said, the world must reaffirm the principles of the UN charter, strengthen trust and cooperation and guide the world toward fulfilling the goals of achieving sustainable development.



From China Daily,2020-06-25
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